With winter in full swing, many people can really begin to feel that their skin gets very dry and the constant application of lotions is the only way to stay comfortable. But dry skin may actually be caused from a diet that is too low in old fashioned saturated fats. When your skin is constantly cracking and rough, looking at your diet as part of the problem is a good place to start. In fact when Dr. Francis Pottenger was working with nutrition and healing the chronically ill with nutrient-dense foods, he found that dry skin was relieved by adding fat to the diet. He said that dry skin is not caused from soaps or weather, but from the diet not rich enough in fat.
In his book, “Pottenger’s Cats, A Study in Nutrition,” he states that “Fats are present in every living cell and are essential to life. Intracellular fat is an important constituent in tissues such as muscle, brain, pancreas, and skin. Nerves are surrounded by a myelin sheath and largely composed of fats: leukocytes, the life-protecting scavengers of the body, are also largely composed of fats. ” Later he says, “In our experience, dry skin provides an index of disturbed fat metabolism. Most patients attribute their dry skin disorders to one of the following causes: hard water, improperly neutralized soaps, detergents, various household chemicals, exposure to the sun or wind, dry weather, dust or incompatible or excessive cosmetics. Few suspect deficiencies in their fat intake. Recognizing that fatty acids have largely disappeared from our modern dietary, we have worked out a high protein, high fat, low carbohydrate diet for general rehabilitation.”
When you start to add fats like raw butter, coconut oil and lard to your daily fare, you may notice over time that your skin improves dramatically. This will be especially true when your digestion improves and you are better nourished from eating a nutrient-dense diet that is rich in vitamins A and D for nutrient absorption. Remember, Dr. Weston A. Price found in his studies of healthy cultures that traditional fats were a very important part of the diet. He found that without both vitamins A and D from natural sources and adequate traditional fats you could not absorb the nutrients from you foods no matter how good the diet.
From this information you might consider that dry skin may be a sign of malnourishment. With the constant buzz that a low-fat /high fiber diet is so healthy, is it a wonder that many people are asking “why”, when their skin is dry and they just don’t feel well on this regimen?
Best in health,